Washington, D.C. - Speaker Nancy Pelosi addressed the House floor this evening on the American Clean Energy and Security Act. She commended the work and leadership of Chairmen Henry Waxman, Ed Markey, Charles Rangel, and Collin Peterson. The bill passed in the House by a vote of 219 to 212.
On the floor, the Speaker said: “No matter how long this Congress wants to talk about it, we cannot hold back the future. And so, in order to move on with the future, I want to yield back my time, submit my statement for the record, and urge my colleagues to vote for this important legislation. And when you do, just remember these four words for what this legislation means: jobs, jobs, jobs, and jobs. Let's vote for jobs.”
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The following are the remarks that the Speaker submitted to the Congressional Record:
“Madam Speaker, today the House has an opportunity to pass historic and transformative legislation: the American Clean Energy and Security Act.
“I would like to acknowledge the authors of the legislation:
- Chairman Waxman of the Committee on Energy and Commerce
- Chairman Markey of the Select Committee on Energy Security and Climate Change
“I would also like to acknowledge:
- Chairman Collin Peterson of the Agriculture Committee for bringing the priorities of America's farmers to this bill
- And Chairman Rangel who helped ensure that this bill is fiscally responsible and fully paid for.
“And I would like to acknowledge the many staff who worked so hard on this legislation.
In his Inaugural Address, President Obama called upon us to, ‘harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories.' One week and one day later, we did just that. We passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act - the single largest investment in history in clean energy - with over $69 billion for new investments in clean energy.
“Shortly thereafter, we passed the omnibus spending bill, with significant investments in advanced energy research and the labs and equipment necessary to perform the next generation of advanced energy research.
“We passed the budget, which included a 10 percent increase in investment in clean energy and energy efficiency.
“This was building upon the work of the last Congress:
- The Farm Bill was the first in history to include a real investment in energy independence, with over $1 billion to leverage renewable energy industry investments in new technologies and new feedstocks.
- And the historic and bipartisan energy bill signed by President Bush increased fuel efficiency standards for vehicles for the first time in 30 years and redirected this country's energy policy toward clean, renewable energy.
“Creating a new energy policy and addressing the global climate crisis is: Energy independence is:
- a national security issue by reducing our dependence on foreign oil;
- an environmental and health issue;
- it is a moral issue;
- and it is an economic issue for America's families.
“There are four words that can describe this bill: jobs, jobs, jobs, and jobs.
“Madam Speaker, we debate this legislation as millions of Americans are struggling in this economy. This is our moment to transform our economy and create jobs.
“This is the moment when we can unleash private sector investment in clean energy to create millions of new jobs and make America the global innovation leader. It will promote clean energy technology - made in America. It will put America in the lead in the global competition.
“As we rebuild America in a green way, we will create jobs that cannot be shipped overseas. We are creating a framework in which innovation can occur and that gives business certainty that we are moving to a clean energy economy. That will unleash innovation, investment, and venture capital to drive new technologies into the market.
“America's farmers will fuel America's energy independence. They will do so with carbon-offsetting crops and forests, and biofuel and wind farms to repower America.
“This historic legislation is the product of months of consensus building to achieve an effective and affordable transition to a clean energy future.
“I am so pleased that the diverse coalition supporting this bill includes everyone from:
- The Union of Concerned Scientists to the Evangelical Climate Initiative and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
- From the business community to labor organizations, from ALCOA to the U.S. Steelworkers of America
- From the U.S. Conference of Mayors to members of the U.S. Climate Action Partnership, a coalition of business and non-profit groups.
“Today, we have an opportunity to lead America toward an effective and affordable transition to a clean energy future. It is a moment we cannot afford to miss. We have a responsibility to create jobs and make America more secure, protect the health of our citizens, and honor our moral responsibility to our children and our future generations.
“Vote to create jobs. Let's put this Congress on the right side of the future. Vote yes on the American Clean Energy and Security Act.
“I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to protect God's beautiful creation by supporting this legislation.”